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My Volendam experience overall was positive . The Indonesia and Far East discovery cruise was perfect length of time to experience the flavour of SE Asia. As a single traveler I found the itinerary and the price reasonable. This was my second HAL experience and it was a great way to embrace cruising in a safe and interesting way. I cannot comment about the ship other than to say it was clean and other than minor floods in the theatre ( no kidding) the crew fixed the problem. One of the things I observed was the Captains commitment to safety of the passengers. I loved having a cabin to myself. The stateroom stewards were great. I had a problem with a noisy fan in the bathroom and it was fixed promptly. I did not go on the cruise for the dinners but I thought the dining room staff were polite and accommodating. Some more helpful than others but all in all great. the food was not rock and roll wonderful but the special dinners were very nice. I had dinner in the cannetello and was underwhelmed - waste of money. maybe I went of a bad night. My favourite entertainment was the Adagio group they were a treasure. I went once or twice to the theatre shows - it was a hit or miss. some people loved the shows I was sorry I missed the mime. I heard he was wonderful. Barry from Boston grew a following in the evenings. he is goofy bold and has a huge repertoire of music he was talented at engaging everyone in sing alongs. He also was kookie in the kiss the fish event. the activities on the boat were fun, lots of people enjoyed then, The singles event coordinator was wonderful she also hosted some cooking shows lots of interesting ideas lots of fun. I liked the lectures in the Indonesian leg of the trip there were not too many ( it would have added a lot to that leg of the trip) the second leg was terrific, we had Tai chi and chi gong classes, history of china, fantastic Phil gave special sessions in the Hudson lounge. We were informed about Buddha, food and cultural characteristics of people. The special martini events were fun too. the gym was clean and the staff in the gym were very helpful. Service was good. the staff at the front desk were great. The Ports - thank goodness for cruise critic . the trips I participated in through cruise critic were wonderful the excursions the I took through HAL were because of the 2 hour drive back and forth from the location to the Ship. Boroduru was wonderful, the HAL bus trip was terrible the use tried to squeeze too many people into too little space . So the stop mid way at the Eva cafe was good the World heritage site was amazing I loved it . the dinner provided was delicious.coming back we stopped at a silver factory it was okay. we had a police escort to get to and from Boroduru. Other people that took private tours got back in time they just took other roads. the trip to AYATHUYA was interesting It was TOO expensive and I would not recommend it. the ship takes two to two and a half hours to get into Bangkok. I was hoping to get some shopping in but the Ayatthuya trip did not allow for that. the elephant ride was okay, I had had enough of Kenny our guide by 2 hours into the trip. waste of money waste of my time. Day two was more interesting the trip on the river, the grand palace was lovely still no time to shop. when you have only a few hours to sleep who need such an expensive hotel? Bottom line just take the shuttle in to Bangkok and do it on your own. Halong Bay was through HAL and I would recommend this trip. lovely and wonderful. Tommy tours in Da Nang is wonderful. I have written a review in trip advisor . loved that day. In Bali we had a driver Mertee from drivers with distinction that showed us around the island. He was fun accommodating and a terrific person to give us an overview of Bali. I would also recommend him. Our private tour in lombock was great. we saw all kinds of temples I joined another cruise critics tour and I cannot find the operators name, but it was very good. Gokomodo tours was good. also arranged trough cruise critic. this was the only place that I made a mistake. there were lots of kids and one darling boy came up begging, he said he had no mother or father I gave him some fruit. right away I had 1 million kids surrounding me. our tour operator said this was a typical strategy kids use. and that he most likely had parents. Viet nam wonderful but crowded. Jakarta dirty and smoggy Singapore - I would go in a heartbeat. that orchid garden in amazing would I go again ? Maybe to revisit some sites and other new ones. I would definitely have more confidence to go on my own. The other travellers you meet are great. all have a variety of background experience. they are also a treasure. all in all those are some of my thoughts on my adventure. all best

Service and Smiles

Volendam Cruise Review by enfpdancer

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2017
  • Destination: Asia
  • Cabin Type: Standard Interior Stateroom
My Volendam experience overall was positive . The Indonesia and Far East discovery cruise was perfect length of time to experience the flavour of SE Asia. As a single traveler I found the itinerary and the price reasonable. This was my second HAL experience and it was a great way to embrace cruising in a safe and interesting way. I cannot comment about the ship other than to say it was clean and other than minor floods in the theatre ( no kidding) the crew fixed the problem. One of the things I observed was the Captains commitment to safety of the passengers.

I loved having a cabin to myself. The stateroom stewards were great. I had a problem with a noisy fan in the bathroom and it was fixed promptly.

I did not go on the cruise for the dinners but I thought the dining room staff were polite and accommodating. Some more helpful than others but all in all great. the food was not rock and roll wonderful but the special dinners were very nice. I had dinner in the cannetello and was underwhelmed - waste of money. maybe I went of a bad night.

My favourite entertainment was the Adagio group they were a treasure. I went once or twice to the theatre shows - it was a hit or miss. some people loved the shows I was sorry I missed the mime. I heard he was wonderful.

Barry from Boston grew a following in the evenings. he is goofy bold and has a huge repertoire of music he was talented at engaging everyone in sing alongs. He also was kookie in the kiss the fish event.

the activities on the boat were fun, lots of people enjoyed then, The singles event coordinator was wonderful she also hosted some cooking shows lots of interesting ideas lots of fun.

I liked the lectures in the Indonesian leg of the trip there were not too many ( it would have added a lot to that leg of the trip)

the second leg was terrific, we had Tai chi and chi gong classes, history of china, fantastic Phil gave special sessions in the Hudson lounge. We were informed about Buddha, food and cultural characteristics of people.

The special martini events were fun too.

the gym was clean and the staff in the gym were very helpful.

Service was good. the staff at the front desk were great.

The Ports - thank goodness for cruise critic . the trips I participated in through cruise critic were wonderful

the excursions the I took through HAL were because of the 2 hour drive back and forth from the location to the Ship.

Boroduru was wonderful, the HAL bus trip was terrible the use tried to squeeze too many people into too little space . So the stop mid way at the Eva cafe was good the World heritage site was amazing I loved it . the dinner provided was delicious.coming back we stopped at a silver factory it was okay. we had a police escort to get to and from Boroduru.

Other people that took private tours got back in time they just took other roads.

the trip to AYATHUYA was interesting It was TOO expensive and I would not recommend it.

the ship takes two to two and a half hours to get into Bangkok. I was hoping to get some shopping in but the Ayatthuya trip did not allow for that. the elephant ride was okay, I had had enough of Kenny our guide by 2 hours into the trip. waste of money waste of my time. Day two was more interesting the trip on the river, the grand palace was lovely still no time to shop. when you have only a few hours to sleep who need such an expensive hotel?

Bottom line just take the shuttle in to Bangkok and do it on your own.

Halong Bay was through HAL and I would recommend this trip. lovely and wonderful.

Tommy tours in Da Nang is wonderful. I have written a review in trip advisor . loved that day.

In Bali we had a driver Mertee from drivers with distinction that showed us around the island. He was fun accommodating and a terrific person to give us an overview of Bali. I would also recommend him.

Our private tour in lombock was great. we saw all kinds of temples I joined another cruise critics tour and I cannot find the operators name, but it was very good.

Gokomodo tours was good. also arranged trough cruise critic. this was the only place that I made a mistake. there were lots of kids and one darling boy came up begging, he said he had no mother or father I gave him some fruit. right away I had 1 million kids surrounding me. our tour operator said this was a typical strategy kids use. and that he most likely had parents.

Viet nam wonderful but crowded.

Jakarta dirty and smoggy

Singapore - I would go in a heartbeat. that orchid garden in amazing

would I go again ? Maybe to revisit some sites and other new ones. I would definitely have more confidence to go on my own. The other travellers you meet are great. all have a variety of background experience. they are also a treasure.

all in all those are some of my thoughts on my adventure.

all best
enfpdancer’s Full Rating Summary
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Bali
    2 days of the highlights of Bali.
    Terraced rice fields, batik factory, folkloric play ( i could have skilled that) a couple of temples the lame waterfall the beach area ( could have spent more time there) . traffic was awful Mertee gave a great overview of Bali He was lots of fun. very reasonable and kind.
    View All 13,595 Bali Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Ayuddhaya Walking Tour
    overpriced
    no time to shop
    not much of an explanation of the ancient ruins
    View All 10 Ayuddhaya Walking Tour Reviews
  • Da Nang
    An amazing day. Marble mountain was lovely, Hoi an was the best. wish I would have had more time in Hoi An. This lovely cultural town was wonderful. not only were there no motorcycles or cars it was a view into life in Viet Nam. The handicrafts, the silk paintings, garment manufacturing crafts were a vision of sound and colour and smells.
    View All 13,595 Da Nang Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Halong Bay
    This was a highlight of the cruise. going through halong bay going inside the caves with the other 5 million tourists. lots of interesting geological formations . the lights in the caves were very dramatic.

    even the ride back was amusing with people trying to sell their wares to us. I bought a bracelet I did not need but it is a good story of the sales girls persistence. fun
    View All 59 Halong Bay Reviews
  • Hong Kong
    Stayed in HK for a few days stayed at the Metropark Kowloon hotel.
    I did 2 tours 1 day to Macau - it was okay would have like more time in the old town . the hotel wannabe Las vegas was limited
    took the 1/2 day cit tour. Great. ( partially because I saw the sites the day before with friends from the ship so I know what to look for)Stanley market is great, saw the junks , saw the top of the city, loved the overview
    View All 320 Hong Kong Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Lombok
    Saw all the temple highlights and linger temple and Mataram highlights
    great!
    View All 13,595 Lombok Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Sihanoukville
    We met outside the port gates, AYA was not our guide but our guide was english speaking and very accommodating. first we went to the market, I would have liked more time but I went back at the end of the day, then we climbed into the van ( the air-conditioning was not great) went to a temple on the hill. Wonderful drive up winding roads to see the off the beaten track temple. Cute kids trying to sell incense. monkeys wondering around and a few monks and blissfully not many tourists. only our car and one other. The washrooms were not western.an experience . it is good I remembered to bring my own TP. Inside the big hall were pictures representing the life of Buddha. Each temple has similar homages to buddha
    We next drove to a local park through a red dirt road to get to a wonderful site where locals picnic.there was local fruit, bbq frogs, and other interesting foods . going across a narrow bridge we cam to the picnic are and a little further up we saw the waterfall, kid bathing moms wading family gathering in these raised shaded decks. Music blaring lots of laughter what an experience.
    following that we drove through where many locals live near to the ports.we then went to an amazing beach ( not enough time ) white sands, a little bit of heaven. it was basically deserted with one or two families having a lovely picnic. Not sure why but the locals love to have their pictures taken. we did drive around to some other sights. a few of our tour members wanted to return to the boat so we did .
    great day great experience. I went back to the market an finished looking for a few souvenirs.
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  • Singapore
    went on the hop on hop off bus it was great.
    also took a river boat ride for 1/2hour also great
    the metro system is easy to ride. the people are great. I like Singapore and will return.
    View All 583 Singapore Cruise Port Reviews
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